Twitter has censored a tweet by Michelle Malkin, a conservative voice, while taking no action against similar tweets from other users.
Michelle Malkin recently tweeted about the George Floyd inspired riots and looting, saying: “In case I wasn’t clear: Violent criminal looters should be shot.” Twitter “temporarily limited some of” her account features for “Violating our rules against abuse and harassment.” According to the notice that Malkin received, her account would begin its 12 hour suspension once the offending tweet was deleted.
Instead of deleting the tweet and serving her suspension, Malkin said she filed an appeal and stated that she is “an advocate for PEACE.” She further stated that “there is nothing abusive or harassing about asserting that violent criminal behavior should be punished and deterred.”
While still awaiting the results of her appeal, Malkin reported that she received another notice from Twitter about a different tweet that had received a complaint. The image Malkin posted showed that Twitter deemed it to not have violated any rules. The offending tweet read:
“Mass migration demographics doom American sovereignty. That was message of UCLA speech that got me blacklisted by @yaf - it’s message of #OpenBordersinc & my CPAC speech. And it’s the message of kids being smeared on campuses. Establishment GOP’s solution? Shoot the messengers.”
Malkin suggested it was the “shoot the messengers” idiom that caused this particular tweet to be reported.
While Malkin’s tweets are being scrutinized and censored by Twitter, others with similar messaging have not been subject to the same treatment. For example, a video has been widely shared of Lakeland Police Department Sheriff Grady Judd explaining that anyone planning to take the riots into the suburbs in Polk County, Fl. should know the following:
“[I]f you value your life, you probably shouldn’t do that in Polk County, because the people of Polk County like guns; they have guns — I encourage them to own guns — and they’re going to be in their homes tonight with their guns loaded. And if you try to break into their homes to steal, to set fires, I’m highly recommending they blow you back out of the house with their guns.”
Twitter has taken no action to remove or censor this video. Yet, Malkin has had her tweets censored.
There are also examples of tweets promoting violence from the left that have not been censored as of the publishing of this piece. One user, replying to a video of uniformed police detaining protestors says: “At that point just take out your guns and shoot these ‘cops[.]’”
Another user tweeted a video of police being dragged by protestors with a comment: “it’s what they deserve #LosAngelesProtest.” The same user also commented on a tweet about police defending ramming their cars into barricades in Brooklyn by saying “burn it.” None of these tweets have been censored in any way.
When reached for comment, a Twitter spokesperson explained that “the account is temporarily locked out for a Tweet that violates our violent threats policy.” The Twitter spokesperson also noted that an account that Malkin had called out for inciting violence toward police has been permanently banned for such tweets.